How 1 Mistake Cost me Thousands

I have made the same mistake for nearly a decade. It seems I needed to learn this lesson multiple times before finally making it click in my mind.

I’m talking about outsourcing.

For the longest time, for any type of service, I did either one of two things:

  1. Compare many providers, look at reviews and go with the best option.
  2. Decide to save the money and do it myself.

It’s clear what the problem would be with the second option: you’ll probably do it wrong, with less quality, and pay more in the long run in terms of time wasted and any expenditures needed to correct what you did in the first place.

What would be wrong with the first option, that is, to compare and go with the best provider? Well, let’s see:

  • Someone’s portfolio is often misleading. It is either not theirs, something they only partially contributed to, or only one of their best works amongst a myriad of drivel that was never made publicly available.
  • Reviews are skewed. People will often not want to leave a negative rating on someone’s profile because they don’t want to be rude or harsh (even if they are not happy with their product/service), or will get harassed by the provider until they change their review.
  • There is always the possibility of a provider not understanding the customers needs, vision, or adherence to other guidelines.
  • There is no real way to know what a service will be like until you try it. Unfortunately, this is the way of the world. We can’t test drive most things, or have the work done only to decide if it’s worth paying for in the aftermath.

With this information in mind, what are we to do?

My solution is simple: Order from 3-5 different providers, and move forward with the solution you are happiest with. This is the most satisfying and sustainable way to achieve everything you want to, without wondering about alternatives and opportunity cost.

The other benefit of this method is that you will save money. How? By using a service like fiverr, where competition is open and abundant. For some reason, every other service out there comes with a premium. Why? There is no conceivable reason to charge 10-100x more on alternative/independent platforms, than with a marketplace like fiverr.

Even marketplaces like 99Designs and DesignCrowd are grotesquely overpriced. Why would I pay $600 for a choice of logos, book covers and packaging, when I can pay 3 separate designers $35 each and get one that’s just as great?

For any type of service, there are freelancers on fiverr who are qualified and ready to service you for a fraction of the price that someone off the platform will.

Admittedly, I made the mistake of:

  • Hiring design services for $900 when I could’ve used fiverr.
  • Hiring tattoo artists for $300 when I could’ve used fiverr.
  • Hiring FBA experts for $1100 when I could’ve used fiverr.
  • Hiring python experts for $600 when I could’ve used fiverr.
  • Hiring trademark experts for $800 when I could’ve used fiverr.
  • Hiring LLC formation experts for $1500 when I could’ve used fiverr.

I could’ve saved thousands upon thousands of dollars if I had learned this lesson early on. Nevertheless, it’s better late than never.

Before you consider an external source. Before you consider a freelancer. Before you consider doing it yourself. Look for it on fiverr. There’s a good chance it’s on there somewhere.